July 11th, 2016 | Rachel Parry
Time to district you from those Monday blues with this gorgeous North West wedding.
Keen to make her day an elegant affair, bride Liz chose a timeless colour scheme of vintage pinks to complement the venue, which was decorated with beautiful and natural blooms.
In particular we love Liz’s luxurious satin A-line dress, as well as her bridesmaid and flower girl dresses too – they all look stunning!
With images by Brides Up North Sponsor Stephen McGowan Wedding Photography.
liz says: Nick proposed during a party that he and my family had organised as a surprise for my 30th birthday. During the night Nick surprised me again with a trip to Iceland (somewhere I’ve always wanted to visit), before asking if I would be his wife in front of everyone – not like him at all!
We set the date for 24th March 2016, which led into the Easter weekend and would give us about a year to plan.
Ashfield House in Standish, Wigan, was our chosen setting. It was the venue of the first wedding fair I went to with my mum and sister. I loved it and nothing compared after that. I took Nick and we decided it was the place for us.
We didn’t have a theme as such, we just wanted everything to be elegant and the venue style helped with this. We then chose a complementary colour scheme of vintage pinks which the flowers and other accessories were styled from.
I chose a champagne, satin, A-line dress by Art Couture, which I bought from Bride in Childwall. I didn’t think I would go for a half/half style dress but after trying this on I fell in love.
My adult’s bridesmaid dresses were satin, A-line designs by Art Couture Christina Wu in a vintage dusky pink colour, which we bought from fab shop in the Wirral called Bella Nuvia. The flower girls wore dresses in the same colour, which were from BHS. My mum also made them pretty under skirts to fill the skirt of the dress and they wore diamante hair bands from Monsoon.
On the day of the wedding me, my mum and my adult bridesmaids arrived at Ashfield House at 8am and got ready there in the Bridal Sitting Room, which was a great space and we got breakfast brought to us.
Laurie Anne Browne did our hair. She was great and made everyone look fabulous on the day – she even managed to get the little girls to sit still! Our nails meanwhile were done by Vicky Powell Banner, who did a wonderful job and bought in extra products to match out colour scheme.
Stephen McGowan was our photographer on the day along with his second-shooter Emma. They were great, from the pre wedding shoot (which really put us at ease – and gave us some lovely shots) right through to the delivery of our pictures a few weeks after the wedding. They made everyone feel relaxed and took great pictures – lots of natural shots, which we were really hoping for and some lovely creative ones out in the rain! We would definitely recommend them.
For my wedding flowers I had a mixed bouquet in soft pinks, lavenders and creams. My bouquet was a slightly larger version of the adult bridesmaids’ bouquets and theirs were slightly bigger than two of the flower girls’ bouquets. The youngest flower girls had soft bunny toys with a matching flower corsage. All the flowers were provided by Perfect Daze in Wigan, who did an amazing job of the bouquets as well as decorating the venue.
The ceremony and reception flowers matched the bouquets and were in the form of adorned candelabras or clusters of mercury glass jars filed with the same flowers. Further flowers were added to plinths in the ceremony room, which I hadn’t asked for but made the room look even more beautiful.
Instead of giving favours we made donations to two charities: Cancer Research and Dogs Trust.
We left bags of toys at the tables to keep the children entertained and packs of photographs to keep the adults entertained. These included pictures of the people on that table from when we were babies through to the present day – they went down well and provided a good talking point at the tables.
Our wedding cake was a simple three-tier design in plain ivory with satin and pearl ribbon and clusters of flowers. My mum baked the cakes and together we decorated them – the night before the wedding!
For the wedding breakfast we gave guests two options for each course: pate or tomato and red pepper soup to start, chicken or sea bass for main and Kilner jar trifle or sticky toffee pudding for dessert. In the evening we offered sausage and bacon rolls with chips and salad and wedding cake for a sweet.
To provide entertainment during our ceremony and reception we had Liz Hendry from The Live Piano Experience to perform. She was great and even learned songs at our request – Here, There and Everywhere, which I walked down the aisle to. In the evening TK Entertainments were our DJs. They were fantastic and provided a lovely white sparkling dancefloor, a screen on which they displayed pictures they were taking during the night and then the week after the weeding, they posted out a DVD of images from the evening. We’d also planned to have sparklers outside but it was a wet day unfortunately.
Following our wedding we would definitely recommend Ashfield House to others. Many of our guests commented on how lovely the venue was and Carol there was brilliant and very helpful. The food was delicious (again many people commented on it) and it’s very tastefully but neutrally decorated so it would fit a lot of different styles.
The ceremony was my favourite part of the wedding day – it felt really special and intimate. I also loved just being with all the people we love and seeing them having a great time.
After the wedding we went to the Laura Ashley Belsfield Hotel in Bowness for four days on a minimoon. It was the perfect getaway to relax and enjoy married life. It also meant we didn’t rush off straight after the wedding but got to spend time with friends and family and hear about things we’d missed on the day and talk about the wedding. We are yet to book our honeymoon abroad but will definitely be going somewhere with a beach and cocktails this summer!
My top tips to other Brides Up North would be – relax, do what makes you happy and pick the things you like – it makes the day feel so special and personal. Also, a friend ours mentioned that they regretted not getting pictures with each table at their wedding so after the meal we went round to each table and had a photograph with everyone – and we’re so glad we did.
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Rachel joined the Brides Up North editorial team as Features Editor in February 2015. Rachel draws on her news reporting background, experience in features, bridal & lifestyle editing for previous regional titles and time spent working for Yorkshire’s most successful PR agencies. Yet to tie the knot herself, Rachel's own wedding looks set to be very, very pretty...
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